Rise in COVID cases leads to tighter safety requirements at Phoebe
ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - Recent increases in COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations have led to new safety guidelines at all Phoebe facilities, according to health system officials.
As of Wednesday morning, these were Phoebe’s COVID-19 numbers:
- Total COVID-19 patients in Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital – 31
- Total COVID-19 patients in Phoebe Sumter Medical Center – 4
- Total COVID-19 patients in Phoebe Worth Medical Center – 2
- Total inpatients recovered – 4,336
- Total positive deaths at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital – 461
- Total positive deaths at Phoebe Sumter – 125
- Total positive deaths at Phoebe Worth – 1
- Total vaccines administered – 80,842
Beginning Thursday, only one visitor at a time will be allowed with each patient.
“Throughout the pandemic, our top priority has been the safety of our patients, visitors and employees. Based on changing conditions, we have updated our visitation and masking rules multiple times, and we feel it is now necessary to do so again,” said Scott Steiner, Phoebe Putney Health System CEO and president.
Also beginning Thursday, visitors and employees at all Phoebe locations will be required to double mask, wearing a surgical mask covered by a well-fitting cloth mask.
“We were able to ease our double mask requirement during the recent lull in COVID transmission, but infections and hospitalizations have increased significantly over the last few weeks,” said Dr. Dianna Grant, Phoebe Putney Health System chief medical officer. “The current dominant strain of COVID is the most immune-evasive to date, and we need to take extra steps to avoid infection. The science is clear: double-masking offers much better protection than a single mask, and it is a simple way to reduce your risk.”
Grant said every one to stay up to date on their vaccines by getting a booster when they are eligible, practicing social distancing, washing their hands often and wearing a mask in public, indoor settings.
“Many of us have let our guard down and stopped practicing some of these simple actions. The truth is, they really work, and during a time of increasing COVID activity, we need to get back in the habit of taking these precautions,” Grant said.
Last month, COVID vaccines were approved for children as young as six months. Phoebe recommends and is now offering, those pediatric vaccines for babies and young children.
“Research shows the vaccines are safe for children. If parents have any questions or concerns, they should talk to their family pediatrician. We also encourage everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated or boosted to do so,” Grant said.
Exceptions and other details of the visitation rules are available here.
To schedule a vaccination appointment at a Phoebe clinic, call (229) 312-MYMD.
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